• Ready to go

    Ready to go

    A South African pharmaceutical company has been selected as a COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing partner.

    A preliminary agreement between South Africa’s Aspen Pharmacare and Johnson & Johnson subsidiaries has laid the foundations for the latter’s vaccine candidate (Ad26.COV2-S) to be produced on a commercial scale, pending the success of ongoing clinical trials.

    Aspen Pharmacare will provide the formulation, filing and secondary packaging of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at its existing sterile facility in Port Elizabeth. Aspen has invested more than ZAR3 billion in the facility, including high-tech equipment and systems, to produce drugs and vaccines. The facility has the capacity to produce more than 300 million doses of the proposed COVID-19 vaccine per annum.

    According to Aspen group CEO Stephen Saad, the company is ‘particularly pleased to be given the opportunity of providing assistance for patients in need across the world from our South African base’.

    10 November 2020
    Image: Gallo/Getty Images